Thursday, January 17, 2013

Taking Time to Listen

Last Saturday (January 12th) I was walking down Talbot Street in Dublin when I was beckoned to stop by one of those religious ‘enthusiasts’ that you see from time to time. I had a few minutes to kill, so I decided what the hell? (I am aware of the ironic choice of wording) and stopped to talk to him.

For those of you who aren't aware of my religious standpoint, I consider myself to be agnostic. While I do recognise the work that science has done in the expansion of our knowledge of the universe, I believe that there are aspects of the religious argument that it will never be able to disprove. Digression aside, I chose (in the conversation on Talbot Street) to neither hide my own beliefs nor attempt to argue for them with him. He was there to present his standpoint and I allowed him to do so.

Now, there were a number of points he made that I found dubious and ill presented, and others that I have heard refutations for before (Pascal’s Wager for one) but again, rather than challenging him, I took it on board and promised I’d consider what he said. Toward the end of our conversation he recommended a number of books to me regarding his argument, one of which I have actually picked up today, and provided me with an email address to contact him.

To once again digress from the main point of this post; I've had the last two weeks booked off work and I’d been considering doing something “different” this week – something I wouldn't usually do. Prior to this I thought it would be something outdoorsy (rock-climbing, hiking etc.) but this intellectual pursuit might actually turn out to be it.

On point; we’re so used to ignoring or arguing with people who don’t share our exact ideas and values these days. I don’t know what I’ll get out of this, but at the very least I've stopped, listened and given someone else the chance to make an influence on my life.  

No comments:

Post a Comment